Full of philosophical puzzles and supernatural surprises, these stories contain some of Borges’s most fully realized human characters. With uncanny insight he takes us inside the minds of an unrepentant Nazi, an imprisoned Mayan priest, fanatical Christian theologians, a woman plotting vengeance on her father’s “killer,” and a man awaiting his assassin in a Buenos Aires guest house. This volume also contains the hauntingly brief vignettes about literary imagination and personal identity collected in The Maker, which Borges wrote as failing eyesight and public fame began to undermine his sense of self.
The title work, "The Aleph", describes a point in space that contains all other spaces at once. The work also presents the idea of infinite time. Borges writes in the original afterword, dated May 3, 1949 (Buenos Aires), that most of the stories belong to the genre of fantasy, mentioning themes such as identity and immortality. Borges added four new stories to the collection in the 1952 edition, for which he provided a brief postscript to the afterword.